About Left Bank Books

Left Bank Books' first location in Searsport, Maine 2004-2012
Our first location in Searsport, Maine (2004 - 2012)

Our Story

In 2022, Left Bank Books employees and Belfast natives Julia Clapp and Tiffany Howard bought the shop from its original owners with the goal of continuing to provide the local community with a thriving bookshop. Julia and Tiffany believe a bookstore should welcome readers of all ages and provide a comfortable space for visitors to peruse a diverse variety of genres, subjects, and perspectives.

Left Bank Books originally opened in Searsport, Maine, in 2004, by founders Barbara Klausmeyer, Lindsay McGuire, and Marsha Kaplan. By 2012, the shop had outgrown its space, and moved to its current location in Belfast.

Left Bank Books, Belfast, Maine
Left Bank Books, Belfast, Maine

At Home in Belfast, Maine

We enjoy offering our local community (and our many summer visitors!) a wide assortment of titles, from classic literature to the newest graphic novels. Books are for everyone, and the right book is out there for every reader!

This year, 2024, we are celebrating our 20th birthday as a fiercely independent, locally owned bookstore!

Books, Books, Books!

We feature approximately 8,000+ titles throughout our shop in more than 20 different categories. Below are some of the most popular genres with our customers.

Customer Favorites


Our top-selling category, we feature contemporary and timeless fiction from Jane Austen to Virginia Woolf, with special depth in prizewinners, foreign authors, and new translations.

Children's Books

From board books to classics, vintage childhood favorites, picture books, nonfiction titles, poetry and fairy tales, we love helping you find the right book for our youngest readers.


Our extensive collection of guidebooks — from Antigua to Zimbabwe — and maps (including Michelin), is complemented by a rich assortment of travel essays and off-the-beaten path titles, all of which reflect our love of exploring foreign lands.

Biography & History

We carry the essential books written about ancient lands and foreign countries, with a special emphasis on American history, complemented by books written about and by the people who have shaped those histories, past and present.

Maine & New England

Our region’s rich literary heritage is reflected in our fiction and non-fiction titles by classic and contemporary Maine authors. Regional guidebooks, maps and specialty publications complete our collection.


We carry all the hot-off-the-press books written by the “big gun” mystery authors as well as perennial favorites from Christie to Sayers. Full disclosure: we admit a special fondness for the mysteries penned by Louise Penny, Martin Walker and Jacqueline Winspear!


In addition to a strong selection of regional cookbooks, we carry cookbooks dedicated to the cuisines of some 15 foreign countries, specialty books on baking, cookbooks for children and the “must have” books that form the foundation of any chef’s library.

Belles Lettres

Here’s where we shelve every title by and about Maine’s own E.B. White, as well as the best books we know that address the fine art of literary criticism, essays, and writing.

As Well As...

Equally wonderful selections in Nature and Pets, Religion and Philosophy, Poetry, Art and Architecture, Home and Garden, Graphic Novels, Reference, Race, LGBTQ, Sports, Psychology and Family.

As Well As...

Equally wonderful selections in Nature and Pets, Religion and Philosophy, Poetry, Art and Architecture, Home and Garden, Graphic Novels, Reference, Race, LGBTQ, Sports, Psychology and Family.

More Than "Just" Books

We carry many beautiful and fun sideline items, such as greeting cards, stickers, stationery, and puzzles!

We proudly feature:

  • Beautiful letter-writing sets and boxed notecards
  • Distinctive cards, some lovely, some funny, some both
  • Funny, creative and inspiring notebooks, journals, and planners
  • Colorful stickers in sheets, as well as larger vinyl stickers for your laptop or water bottle
  • Poster-quality wrapping paper in sheets, for all sorts of decorative and crafty uses

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